I admit I am a beauty junkie but I also admit I am a coward. At No-Nonsense Beauty Blog, I get many questions about TCA peels but I’ve heard they can be uncomfortable. I wanted to get real time answers, but I cringed at the idea of a serious peel. I’ve had 70% glycolic peels that gave me a little glow, but never had a peel where my skin actually peeled. This winter I decided to put on my big girl panties and donate my face to science in yet another beauty experiment.
IMO Carissa McCormick is the best esthetician in NYC. Working with Park Avenue aesthetic surgeon Dr Z. Paul Lorenc, she has changed my skin with amazing treatments including the Hydrafacial and Forever Young BBL.Before we started she sat me in front of a Visia imaging system to take a photo that can show the skin below the surface. A few weeks after the TCA peel, we took a second set of Visia photos to show the real physical changes from the peel..
Carissa started with the Sensi Peel from PCA that contained 6% TCA, 12% lactic acid,as well as kojic acid and citric acid. It felt warm but not uncomfortable, especially with a little fan aimed at my face. (On a pain scale of 1-10, it was about a zero.) After about 10 minutes, she applied a second layer, this time using Ultra Peel Forte which contained 20% TCA and 10% lactic acid. Another 10 minutes passed under the fan and Carissa applied a third layer of .3% Retinoic Acid ( Just for comparison the highest concentration of a Retin A gel contain .05%). Carisa explained
that the TCA peel mix opened up the pores and increased access to the skin. After 10 minutes the peel was over. My skin looked a little red and shiny. For the final step Carissa applied a Tizo sunscreen to protect my freshly treated face.
The peeling started 48 hours later. It was very mild and mostly around my cheeks and jawline. The light peeling and dryness lasted three days, leaving my skin soft and smooth. It was so fresh and clear, I didn’t want to cover it with a foundation. However I became even more compulsive about sunscreen use, not wanting to lose what I had gained.
How the TCA Peel Changed The Skin
I thought my skin looked wonderful and my photos show a subtle refinement that was hard to describe. My follow-up Visia photos explained what I was actually seeing. The little green dots identify enlarged pores. When you compare the number of dots on the cheek( before treatment on the left) to the dots on the cheek ( after treatment on the right) there is about a 25% reduction. This is a big reason for the visible improvement and two months later and I still don’t need foundation. At $150/ treatment, this peel is a fabulous and affordable way to get a special and long lasting improvement in skin tone and texture.